Police and Crime Commissioner welcomes greater legal protection for children

23rd March 2020

The Police and Crime Commissioner for Gwent, Jeff Cuthbert, has welcomed the Children (Abolition of Defence of Reasonable Punishment) (Wales) Bill which received Royal Assent on Friday 20 March.

The new act will remove the defence of ‘reasonable punishment’, meaning that an adult cannot claim they were disciplining a child when accused of assault. The new rules will come into force from March 21 2022.

Jeff Cuthbert said: “I am pleased to see that the Children (Abolition of Defence of Reasonable Punishment) (Wales) Bill today received Royal Assent, bringing us in line with several countries across the world by giving children equal protection in law.

“It is time that children in Wales were given the same protection from physical punishment as adults and we will work with Welsh Government to ensure that education and guidance is provided to parents.

“The law does not inadvertently criminalise parents and I am reassured that criminal action will only be taken when clearly necessary.

“I will speak with the Chief Constable for Gwent to see what practical issues this might raise for policing and how they can best be overcome.”